Mitchell County Hospital Awarded for Quality Care and Patient Safety

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Mitchell County Hospital Awarded for Quality Care and Patient Safety

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Mitchell County Hospital was recently awarded a Quality and Patient Safety Award from the Partnership for Health and Accountability (PHA), a division of the Georgia Hospital Association (GHA), for its project, “Our Journey to Core Measures Success.” MCH placed third among critical access hospitals in the state for their initiative to reduce the risk of medical errors and improve patient safety and medical outcomes.

“Core measures are clinical processes of care that are known to be the most effective methods of treatment for particular patients,” said Carla Beasley, director of nursing at MCH. “For instance, a recommended treatment to help prevent a heart attack is to take aspirin either before or upon arrival at the hospital, as well as at discharge. Another example is to administer an antibiotic to a patient with pneumonia within four hours of the patient’s arrival.”

According to GHA, a hospital’s adherence to the recommended clinical practices usually leads to better outcomes.

“Our goal was to improve our hospital’s protocols related to Core Measures,” said Beasley. “With input from physicians, nurses and staff, our team implemented a new chart review and discharge process that allows opportunity to enhance care and order additional medication for patients as needed.”

Beasley said patient education was also a focus of the initiative, and has resulted in patients having a better understanding of discharge instructions, which ultimately reducing re-hospitalizations.

Within three months of implementing the changes, 100 percent of patients admitted with the specific Core Measures diagnoses received the gold standard of care recommendation at MCH. Since implementing the new processes, the hospital has remained at the 100 percent benchmark for the past three years.

“Following best practices for heart failure and pneumonia patients is a priority of hospitals statewide,” said GHA president Earl V. Rogers. “We applaud Mitchell County Hospital’s efforts to increase adherence to core measures and providing the best and safest care possible for its patients.”

The PHA Quality and Patient Safety award marks the third recognition the hospital has received this year for its sustained focus on quality care. MCH was the only hospital in South Georgia named to the National Rural Health Association’s (NHRA) list of Top Critical Access Hospitals in the country, an achievement based on the hospital’s quality percentile rank on Hospital Compare process of care measures. In addition, MCH was named to Georgia Trend’s list of Top Hospitals in the state, a ranking based on publicly available information on quality of care, patient satisfaction, mortality and readmission statistics and data on hospital-acquired infections and conditions. 

“Our quality awards are a testament to the dedication of our physicians, nurses and staff who are focused daily on providing our patients the right care at the right in a safe environment close to home,” said Beasley. “It’s important for our community to know that they can receive award-winning, high quality care at Mitchell County Hospital.”